Common Eye Issues

Blue Light

Since much of the world began working or learning from home, you have probably heard lots of chatter about blue light. But what is it?

Blue light waves are among the shortest, highest energy wavelengths in the visible light spectrum. The shortness of theses wavelengths causes a flickering which creates an unfavorable glare. Extended use of blue light-emitting technology such as phones, computers, and TVs makes you more likely to experience the side effects such as eye strain, headaches, and fatigue. Prolonged exposure to blue light can also cause retinal damage and may contribute to age-related macular degeneration.

We proudly offer Shamir lenses that help block blue light, making it easier to focus and protect your eyes. Even if you don't normally wear glasses, you can still get them in a plain, non-prescription lens! Be sure to ask us about it the next time you are shopping for glasses.

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Dry Eye Syndrome

Dry eye is a condition where the eye does not produce enough quality tears to properly lubricate the eye. The most common symptoms of dry eye include stinging or burning, redness, and a scratchy or gritty feeling. Tears are essential to proper eye function by providing lubrication, washing away foreign matter, and reducing infection risk.

Dry eye syndrome can mean that you do not produce enough tears to properly lubricate your eye or that the tears you are producing aren’t of high quality. And new studies show that this condition can be induced or exacerbated by extensive mask wearing. If you are experiencing symptoms of dry eye, please reach out to your eye doctor for an evaluation. We can often start treating you on the day of your visit!

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Cataracts are a cloudy or opaque area in the lens of the eye, which is normally clear. Depending upon the size and location of cataracts, they can interfere with normal vision. While cataracts are more common in patients over 55, they can develop at almost any age.

There are different types of cataracts and several risk factors which increase the likelihood of developing cataracts. Symptoms include blurry or hazy vision, dulling of colors, difficulty seeing at night and increased sensitivity to light. Our optometrists can diagnose cataracts and refer out to an ophthalmologist if surgical correction is recommended.

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Glaucoma is a group of eye diseases that can lead to irreversible vision loss and blindness. Fluid build-up in the eye puts increased pressure on the optic nerve, causing irreversible nerve damage. This is why we check your eye pressure with the air puff at your annual exam. When caught early, glaucoma is manageable with medication.

If the doctor believes you are displaying symptoms or are at high risk for glaucoma, they may recommend you return to our office for additional tests. These include Humphries visual field, OCT, and pachymetry.

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Diabetes and Eye Health

People with diabetes are at heightened risk for eye disease and vision problems. While most will experience only minor impact over time, diabetes can sometimes lead to blindness.

Most vision problems in diabetics are due to diabetic retinopathy (seen here), which is a disease where excess sugar in the blood leads to blocked and damaged blood vessels in the retina. However, diabetic retinopathy can also lead to other issues such as diabetic macular edema, neovascular glaucoma, and retinal detachment. Did you know that your eye doctor can detect early signs of diabetes just by looking at your eyes during a comprehensive eye exam?

Part of blindness prevention and eye treatment in diabetic patients includes a dilated eye exam every year. This includes dilation and retinal photos (Optos) in order to fully assess the health of the eye and screen for any changes. Your eye doctor will send a report to your PCP or diabetic specialist after each exam.

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Seasonal Allergies

Many people don't realize how allergies can affect the eyes, but itching, swollen eyelids, redness, irritation, dry eye, and watery eyes are all common symptoms of seasonal allergies. These symptoms can be addressed through over-the-counter therapies, but in certain cases, a prescription treatment may be appropriate. Unsure if it's pink eye or allergies? Our doctors can spot the difference and diagnose either in order to prescribe appropriate treatment. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, please contact our office for an appointment.

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